Sunday, April 15, 2007

April, you're such a tease

My discipline wanes with the melting snow. In March cross-country skiing is a treat. In April bundling up is too much of a hassle.

The first weekend of April was painfully beautiful. All of a sudden the sky, buildings, boxcars on the passing train, everything that looks so flat in the winter, when we are the filling in a gray sandwich of sky and clouds, dazzled. Even the muddy ground appeared vibrant. All this color upstaged the thrill of going outside without a down vest and mittens. My thawing toes, however, were notable. On days like this, a flatlander can’t help but expect a normal spring.

For me, normal lies (not so far) south of the Mason Dixon line. Down there puffy fruit trees bloom overnight. They capture one’s attention until the rest of the landscape turns green. While the flora struts its stuff, the temperature winds lazily upward. July will bring swampy humidity, but May is heaven so who cares?

Today’s slush-storm is a rude reality check. Up here, far closer to Canada than any outpost of the confederacy, spring would be a euphemism for the stretch between winter and summer. Would be if anyone ever bothered to use the word. Instead they call it like it is, mud season. Maybe it’s a survival technique ---don’t want to get one’s hopes up for nothing. Maybe it’s a warning—flatlanders beware: you’re in for a rough few months. Whatever the origin, one thing is for sure: every mud season I witness makes winter seem better and better.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i don't think i remember the first week in april. this winterlike mess sloshing down tonight has completed wrecked any memory i have of better times. suddenly the only thing i'm remembering is last april: grey and rainy and rainy.

you should know that this - watching white slush pour down outside my window and wondering how bad my drive home this SPRING night will be - is the only time you'll get me to admit that vermont, too, is flawed.

(though not as flawed as any state that's foolish enough to fall south of the mason-dixon line...)

oh well. if we were backcountry sliding down some mountain (taking the "difficult" route of course, what with us not being novices and all...) maybe i'd be in a better mood. hell, what am i talking about? if I were doing ANYTHING rather than chilling with my thug-ass kids i'd be in a better mood...